Walden Asset Management's efforts to have filtration and packaging company Clarcor report in much more detail on its sustainability efforts has failed for the second year in a row — but the firm has picked up some support in the past 12 months. At Clarcor's recent annual shareholders' meeting, 17.4 million shares were cast in favor of Walden's proposal, while 21.1 million shares were cast against the plan. A year ago, those numbers were 14.3 million and 21.5 million, respectively.
The Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry has hired Amy Arnold Martin to serve as associate vice president of environment and energy.
Martin, a graduate of Carson-Newman College, will handle the chamber’s legislative and policy initiatives in those two sectors. Martin comes to the chamber from the Tennessee Valley Authority, where she was responsible for overseeing relationships with public officials in Middle Tennessee, including working with members of the Tennessee General Assembly.
“Amy understands policy and the role business plays in our legislative process and will continue our strong tradition at the chamber of dedicated leadership,” said Chamber President Catherine Glover. “Her deep knowledge and expertise in environmental and energy programs, coupled with her legislative acumen is an asset to the business community in Tennessee.”
Martin has in the past also worked as a policy advisor to the federal co-chair of the Appalachian Regional Commission, where she oversaw the development of rural economic and community development policy initiatives, and as the legislative liaison for the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance.
Stites & Harbison attorney Bill Penny has been named chairman of the American Bar Association’s Section of Environment, Energy and Resources. He is the first Tennessean to lead the group, which has more than 11,000 members.
Penny has practiced environmental law and litigation for more than 30 years and also has served as general counsel for the Tennessee Department of Environment & Conservation. He will serve as chair of the ABA's environment, energy and resources section through July of next year.
“The practice of environmental, energy and resources law continues to evolve as we encounter new environmental and political challenges,” Penny said. “Lawyers are now practicing in the areas of climate change and sustainability, which were only conceptual areas of law a few years ago. While the mainstream environmental practice will continue, our ABA section will review, evaluate and position ourselves to meet the needs of an ever-changing legal environment, locally, nationally and internationally.”
Penny also teaches environmental law and administrative law at The Nashville School of Law.
Wayne Edwards, the president of local marketing communications firm Bill Hudson Agency, has been named to the board of directors of Restoring Our Watershed, an environmental restoration and sustainable development organization in Costa Rica. Restoring Our Watershed works with local, national and international partner groups to revitalize the ecosystem and promote local food production in the Nandamojo River watershed of Costa Rica’s Guanacaste province. Edwards has visited the region numerous times and provided pro bono communications to the group for several years. He also is facilitating brand development for the newly formed Nandamojo Valley Chamber of Commerce.
“Wayne has a long history of supporting our environmental renewal and economic development programs,” said Matt Rosensteele, executive director of ROW. “We look forward to using his marketing and branding expertise to elevate ROW’s presence locally and internationally.”
The Tennessee Valley Authority and Nashville Electric Service have cut a $350,000 check to Bridgestone Americas as a reward for the energy efficiency improvements the tire maker has made in recent years at its La Vergne plant. An improved lighting system installed in 2010 has cut power consumption by 3.8 million kilowatt-hours. The cash will go into the Bridgestone Americas Environmental and Energy Strategic Fund to be applied to other conservation projects.
The Tennessee Environmental Council and nonprofit group Rediscover East! have filed suit against PSC Metals in District Court for alleged environmental violations at the company's prominent East Bank facility. The complaint asks for an injunction and wants the court to apply the maximum penalty possible under law — $37,500 per day every day since Sept. 10, 2010. That would amount to about $35 million and counting.
The notice claims that water samplings from a drain used by PSC had elevated levels of suspended solids, copper, lead, iron and zinc when tested in September 2010. Other samplings in 2011 and 2012 allegedly found industrial waste, oil and grease in the water.
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